Russian Official: Blockchain as a Technology Shall Remain Beyond Regulation

News and Analysis

According to Elina Sidorenko, the head of the Russian Central Bank’s working group on cryptocurrencies, products incorporating blockchain technology should be a part of the legal terrain, while the technology itself should remain beyond regulation.

Speaking at the panel titled “Legal Aspects of Blockchain Applications in Business Processes” during today’s Blockchain & Bitcoin Conference Russia, she stated:

“For now we’re discussing the idea that there are some rules, while the technology (and we’re speaking not of some infobase but of a technology underlying the infobase) cannot be within a regulatory framework. It should be a part of a standard, and Russia has seriously advanced in this regard.”

Sidorenko noted that blockchain standards could be developed in foreseeable future.

“There’s an international company dealing with standards, and Russia has recently presented an interesting report there. It was decided that in a short while, I believe, in a year’s time or so, there will be some blockchain standards developed for international use. Should it happen, it’s even better than some sort of a legalization for us,” she said.

Sidorenko stressed that the technology advances in any case, so jamming it with regulation will only prevent the national state from using new incarnations of blockchain.

“In fact, the problem is that blockchain is multifaceted. There’s Proof-of-Work, Proof-of-Authority, Proof-of-Stake, so we have to understand what exactly we’re standardizing. Speaking of blockchain as a whole, we have to realize it’s impossible to introduce some universal standards. As for private blockchains, there’s a problem of e-signatures. If it’s a public blockchain, it has its own issues. Anyway, the standards are being developed, and we have respective working groups engaged in that. I believe, some ideas will crystallize in a short while,” Sidorenko noted.

She also agreed with the opinion assuming that actions involving blockchain technology have to have full force and effect for the authorities, courts, financial institutions and law enforcement agencies.

“That is the context that has to be presented. We have to introduce the products generated by the technology. All those things have to be reflected legally, yet the technology itself shall remain beyond any regulation,” Sidorenko concluded.

This March, Australia-based standardizing agency Standards Australia has published the world’s first roadmap for standardization of blockchain technology. The document developed under the auspices of the Australian government and FinTech Australia has become a part of a somewhat wider initiative to develop universal international standards for companies working with blockchain technology.

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